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Lifestyle : Blue Mountains Special Report 2013
1HERSA1 S004 THE SYDNEY MORNING HERALD THURSDAY, MARCH 28, 2013 4 BLUE MOUNTAINS & SURROUNDS The 10 essential attractions for your touring itinerary Berry nice: The markets around the Blue Mountains region offer plenty to tempt the food-lover. From Page 3 Screen stars: Diane and Ron Bayley of Mount Vic Flicks. Photo: Simon Alekna Heritage trail: Norman Lindsay Gallery and Museum, Faulconbridge; Aboriginal art at Red Hands Cave, Glenbrook (below). Pictures: Sahlan Hayes, Bruce Elder Visit the 1930s-era garden of the National Trust property Everglades. In spring, poke around some of the best private cool-climate gardens during the Leura Gardens Festival (October 5-13). everglades.org.au; leuragardensfestival.com 4 They take their produce seri- ously in the Blue Mountains. Join the locals stocking up at the Blackheath Growers' Markets, held on the second Sunday of each month at Blackheath Community Centre. Bring a cooler and fill it with goat's cheese, pork, bacon, saltbush lamb, duck, quail, eggs, cream, butter, apples and cider. Or forage for brek- kie or brunch (the markets are all over by noon) -- there are freshly baked pastries and coffee. Don't leave the village without checking out its most famous landmark -- fashion designer and local resident Jenny Kee's colourful mural covering the Victory Theatre's side wall. 5 So you've driven up to the Blue Mountains in perfect sunshine only to find pea-soup fog enveloping the Three Sisters, or the mercury lurking around zero . . . escape the travails of the unpredictable weath- er by embracing the retro charm of Mount Vic Flicks. Mugs of tea and coffee, scones and cream, lollies and slices are sold from the refreshment stand inside the one-screen cinema at prices you don't see in the big smoke any more. The quaint cinema is just off the highway inside Mt Vic- toria's 1934 public hall. Harley Aven- ue, Mt Victoria. mountvicflicks.com.au 6 Want to escape the madding crowds that flock to Katoomba's Echo Point? Many day-trippers simply aren't equipped to take on the Giant Stairway's 872 steps that zig-zag down the cliff to connect with Federal Pass below the Three Sisters. Give the thighs a real work- out by following the track past Katoomba Falls and climbing back to the top of the escarpment via the Furber Steps (or take the no-effort route back up with the Scenic Rail- way once it reopens in April). The Visitor Information Centre at Echo Point offers good advice on other trails, distances, walking times and closures. 7 Visiting the Blue Mountains is not all about Katoomba and Leura. Drop in on the village of Wentworth Falls to explore other trails such as the challenging Went- worth Pass loop, which includes extraordinary valley views from Empress Lookout. Others might like to take it easier exploring the Overcliff-Undercliff track, which sprouts wildflowers such as red and yellow Christmas bells during the warmer months. Many hikers refuel at Conservation Hut while pastry- lovers might point themselves towards Conditorei Patisserie Schwarz, a German bakery selling everything from sour cherry dani- shes to strudel, strietzel and linzer torte. 30 Station Street, Wentworth Falls. 8 It's 20 years since Hugh Grant and Elle Macpherson shared the big screen in the movie Sirens, which explored the life of controversial art- ist Norman Lindsay (most famous for his illustrated children's book The Magic Pudding). Some scenes were shot at the Norman Lindsay Gallery & Museum at Faulconbridge. The artist's former home includes a sandstone cottage, gardens adorned with erotic sculptures, a wisteria walk and, of course, examples of the work that so shocked the establish- ment. The movie also featured the Blue Pool -- a glorious natural swim- ming hole located just beyond the Glenbrook entrance to Blue Moun- tains National Park. normanlindsay.com.au nationalparks.nsw.gov.au 9 Venture into the Blue Mountains National Park via Glenbrook to see one of the best indigenous sten- cil galleries in the Sydney basin. Red Hands Cave is a gallery of hand sten- cils and prints created by the Darug people, who used the cave for thou- sands of years. White settlers first stumbled upon the ancient artwork in the 1930s while searching for a lost child. Visitors can also camp overnight at nearby Euroka, which boasts not only plenty of grazing kangaroos but one of the best dawn choruses around. Campers will wake to the sound of kookaburras, par- rots, cockatoos, honeyeaters, watt- lebirds, lyrebirds and whipbirds. 10 Nothing ruins a great week- end in the mountains quicker than getting stuck in traffic jams heading back to Sydney. If you haven't left the top of the mountains by 2pm Sunday, consider staying for dinner. Some visitors like the quirky Hobbit-like interior of Common Ground cafe ´ in Katoomba (open Sundays until 8pm), while Katoomba's Arjuna Indian Restaur- ant has sunset views over the cliffs (open Sundays until 10pm). On oth- er nights, consider Blaxland's Res- taurant Como and Katoomba's Darley's Restaurant at Lilianfels Resort and Spa -- both scored one hat in the SMH Good Food Guide. EST. 1933 515 Great Western Highway, Faulconbridge Phone: 4751 1804 Unit 4, 88 Batt St Penrith Phone: 4721 3948 www.uggboots.com.au Email: email@example.com "Keep Your Tootsies Warm This Winter" Australian Made Ugg Boots Sheepskin Cowskins Cowskin Mats
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